INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES
Cnet JULY 4, 2007 - by James Martin
BRIAN ENO'S KALEIDOSCOPE FOR EARS AND EYES
At the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, from June 29 through July 1, the Long Now Foundation presented 77 Million Paintings, a digital video installation featuring an ever-changing creation by musician and artist Brian Eno.
Wanting to utilize the millions of TVs and monitors which sit idle in homes and offices each day, Eno envisioned his creation as a sort of "visual music" that can be run on any home computer. The hypnotic movements and the constant changing and morphing of layers is reminiscent of Eno's ambient soundscapes, which are also recognized for their slow, rhythmic evolution.
A seemingly endless series of images created by Eno are slowly layered across the forty-five-foot-wide screen. Because the images will never repeat themselves in the same order in the same way, the experience for viewers is always different.
The exhibit and the gallery encouraged visitors to spend some time, and many spent the entire night sitting or lying on the floor in the silence of the room, filled only with the subtle ambient sounds of Eno's music.
Behind the scenes, a technician kept watch over the three huge rear projectors splashing Eno's art across the screens.
The event at the gallery was accompanied by a simultaneous three-day gallery event in Second Life. A live video feed from the YBCA gallery in San Francisco broadcast scenes from the night into the virtual world.
A day after Apple's iPhone launch, an iPhone owner was spotted testing out the device's camera capabilities on the Chime Generator, an exhibit in the lobby of YBCA that uses a phased Geneva wheel algorithm to generate a different ringing order for each day of the next ten-thousand years.
The show was produced by the Long Now Foundation's Danielle Engelman, who originally conceived the idea for the 77 Million Paintings show as a Long Now members-only exhibit before deciding to open it up as a three-day event. More than eight hundred advance tickets were sold for the Saturday night show at the gallery.